Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
“Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled.” As we enter these final days of Advent, our preparation for the coming of the Lord continues. It is a hope-filled preparation. Hope implies our belief that what we expect will indeed occur. We expect the birth of our Savior on Christmas Day, we are confident that the Lord comes to save His people.
Throughout the Old Testament, we see testimony that God desires to redeem Israel, His chosen people. The covenant God makes with Abraham is renewed many times, the prophets are sent to convert, encourage, and remind Israel of God’s plan for them. Divine Revelation is full of the word of the Lord being spoken and people looking forward in hope to the fulfillment of that word. When Mary hears the words of the angel Gabriel, she understands them in this long, historical, spiritual context. She receives them as the revelation of how God will bring salvation to His people. Her faith and hope enable her to accept and say a confident “yes” to God’s plan. She believes that what the Lord has spoken, both to the whole history of Israel and to her through the angel, will be fulfilled. Truly, as Elizabeth says, Mary is blessed!
We are invited to share in this confident faith and hope of the Blessed Virgin Mary. With her, we are invited to say yes to the will of God in our lives. God renews His covenant with us again and again. This Christmas, He calls us to place our confidence in His loving plan once again. Let us use these final days and hours of Advent to prepare with joy, to open our hearts more fully, and to ready ourselves to go forth to meet Christ the newborn King!